Formalization and Administrative Burden as Obstacles to Employee Recruitment: Consequences for the Public Sector

Martin Sievert, Dominik Vogel, Mary K. Feeney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Job advertisements are a crucial first step in the recruitment process. Public sector organizations overwhelmingly rely on passive recruitment tactics such as written notices, listing formal rules and legal processes, and excessive application procedures. Little is known about the signals these formal rules and procedures send to potential applicants. This research uses a survey experiment to examine the effects of formalization and administrative burden in public sector job advertisements on individuals’ intention to apply for a job and the moderating role of public service motivation, person–organization fit, and person–job fit. The results indicate that formalization leads to lower application intentions. Administrative burdens such as compliance costs do not have a significant effect. These findings emphasize the negative signal of formalization in public sector job advertisements, which has the effect of making these jobs less desirable to potential applicants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalReview of Public Personnel Administration
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • administrative burden
  • behavioral public administration
  • formalization
  • job advertisement
  • public sector recruitment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Administration
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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